I first discovered and met noa- at Club Milk in San Francisco. He was painting live on stage, barefoot, with his clothes all covered in paint. Beats pulsated throughout the room as this serious, yet always smiling artist drew a distinct image on the massive canvas before him. He would stroke the paint brush, step back, look at the canvas, then proceed on. It was difficult to discern what he was painting… If it even “made any sense”. Others who were spectating, as well as myself, were very curious to see the finished product. Little did I know, that night, that the piece he was creating– was going to end up in the living room of my apartment!
noa- sees the world in a way that no one else can. It’s evident in his work. His subjects (people or animals, for instance) in his paintings are often seen with no eyes. And note the continuous usage of one or more focal points/images, displayed in the midst of colorful and abstract swirls– in most of his paintings.
noa- can be found painting live at various events. I ran into him at the 2011 “Hip Hop in the Park” show, at People’s Park, in Berkeley, CA. Eligh of Living Legends headlined the show. noa did an astounding and beautiful portrait of Eligh (as shown above).
I was able to snatch a quick interview with noa-:
S&D: Who are your Influences?
noa-: Too many of them to list up.
S&D: How do you describe your work?
noa-: It’s all about a beauty of line.
S&D: What got you started with painting?
noa-: Enjoyment of drawing and painting
S&D: Please tell us about yourself.
noa-: I was born in US, grown up in Japan, then came to the US after High School, and now live and work in San Francisco Bay Area.
S&D: In your paintings, the characters don’t have eyes. What is the significance of that?
noa-: I believe an emptiness makes an existence which gives a strong impact on viewers.
S&D: What can the audience expect from a live performance, by noa-?
noa-: No one can expect what’s gonna happen, even I don’t. That might be an expectation for the audience. I will keep trying new things, and develop my style … further.
S&D: Very true! I felt the same way, when I first witnessed your live painting at Milk. I didn’t know what to expect. It was exciting to see the end product! What positive feedback(s) have you received from your audience?
noa-: I always pleasure to hear what the people think about my painting during I paint or after.
S&D: What else do you love besides art? What other things are you into or love to do?
noa-: I love listening music and going into woods
S&D: Anything you would like to share with us?
noa-: Me and my friend are organizining the event for Japan benefit, called Rise Japan(www.risejapan.us). Let’s get together and send the love to Japan.
S&D: Thank you for your time, noa-! It’s always a pleasure to meet with you!
For more on noa-, a schedule of his upcoming appearances, et cetera… please visit his website: http://www.followyourline.com